John is the Managing Director of Fostering People and as such knows a little bit about stress, but he insists this role is not the most stressful he has had.
For those that know John, you'd probably agree that he always has a smile on his face and a joke at hand, rarely does he actually look too stressed in the work place, so we thought we'd get him to share his secrets for managing stress this 'Stress Awareness Day'.
"I use to work as a children and families social worker, a role I did for 7 years - that role really was stressful, because of the life changing decisions you are making. I feel fortunate now, working with foster carers. I was once was a house parent in Australia too – looking after 4 teenagers! Now that was extremely stressful! And good fun at times too.
Being inspected by Ofsted is stressful. You feel such a sense of responsibility – knowing if you don’t get it right how it can impact negatively for staff, foster carers, even children. Yes we are all in it together, but I really feel the responsibility. It’s the same stress I used to feel being in court – that responsibility for others.
But how do I manage stress? My kids help with stress so much. Before kids I would worry, but now I play football, do up coats, listen to their stress, try to help, try to not give them more stress myself!
Otherwise what do I try to do to help with stress?
A bit of exercise
Get some good sleep
Talk and listen
and most importantly try and laugh a lot and have fun.
These are in short some of the same skills I think help to be a good foster carer.
And then if there is something I need to do that I know will be stressful, I work my socks off and always arrive early".